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Secretary of state predicts Brexit boom for Greater Cambridge

By Ben Comber

Priti Patel - Int Development Sec of State at Gonville Hotel with James Palmer (left). Picture: Keith Heppell
Priti Patel - Int Development Sec of State at Gonville Hotel with James Palmer (left). Picture: Keith Heppell

Secretary of State for International Development Priti Patel MP joined Conservative county mayoral hopeful Cllr James Palmer in Cambridge to discuss opportunities the new role would bring the county.

She said the region would have the potential to seize post-Brexit opportunities through new trade deals, including new relationships with overlooked developing countries.

Ms Patel, who was a devolution minister, said: “I deliberately use London as an example of how we empowered a mayor to transform a locality, but importantly to bring investment in, and not just government money but private sector investment to catalyse growth and to support growth.

“Look at the international firms that are here in Cambridge. When it comes to Britain post-Brexit we’re going to have amazing international opportunities.

“The firms that are here will want to expand and grow through new opportunities and investment in new markets, they will want to recruit more people, train more people. We need the capacity here to support that basically.

“I think Britain post-Brexit involves more trade opportunities, leading more free trade, doing more trade with developing countries in a way we have simply not done in the past, because all our focus has been on the European Union.

“That means, for companies here, new markets and new trading partners and that can only lead to long term economic growth and prosperity.”

The election of a mayor for the new combined authority of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough takes place on May 4.


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